THE Haining does not wish to exclude the people of Selkirkshire, its newly-unveiled volunteer committee has stressed.
And a public meeting next month will give Souters the opportunity to get involved in plans to transform the historic house and 160-acre estate, which the late Andrew Nimmo-Smith left “for the benefit of the community of Selkirkshire and the wider public”.
The appointment of a volunteer committee ahead of the debate was criticised at Selkirk Community Council’s meeting earlier this month.
But committee member Freda Petts said anyone wanting to get involved is welcome to put their names forward at the August meeting. She told The Wee Paper: “It has never been a closed shop. We need volunteers for a variety of things that need done, such as cleaning the garden, and plastering and painting the house.
“If we can get volunteers to do this work, it means we could concentrate on other projects. This is a rally cry to the people of Selkirkshire to help us and be supportive.”
Members of the new panel include well-known local actor John Nichol, Scott’s Selkirk stalwart Viv Ross and designer Deryck Henley.
Viv added: “There has been a slight misconception about the will itself and people are definitely feeling excluded from what they see as being their property.
“It has to be explained to them what the terms of the will are, what is trying to be done within the terms of the trust and then, hopefully, we can get people enthused about the plans for the future.”
Other names on the committee are local postman Ewan MacDougall, Lloyd and Hayley Emberey, Doreen Cairns and Caroline Penman.
The contents of The Haining, owned by beneficiaries of Mr Nimmo-Smith’s will, were auctioned off in Glasgow yesterday.
The trust will collect half of the sale proceeds, which will go towards paying for a new kitchen in the house so it can be run as a small venue.
The public meeting is to be held on Thursday, August 23, in the parish church hall.
z We need Selkirkshire’s support – P9